Tuesday, September 23, 2008

FBI Investigating Wall Street, No Money For Campaign Promises, Palin At The UN, The Road To Nowhere, And Drew Griffin Investigates Biden

Hi everybody. Larry King interviewing Ahmadinejad? Really, CNN? Look, I like Larry King. He's like your old uncle who tells goofy jokes and always has hard candy in his pocket. But you don't go to Uncle Larry for help with your calculus homework; know what I'm saying? Say what you want about the perceived horribleness of Iran's prez, he's a force to be reckoned with during an interview. He's known to give questioners a run for their money and these are people that can usually remember all of their guests names. Don't waste the big fish. Just saying.

Anyway, when last we met our heroes, the economy was collapsing and everything sucked. And yeah, that's pretty much still going on, but now we've got some extra BREAKING NEWS sprinkles on our clusterf*ck sundae. It seems the FBI is now investigating 26 companies for possible fraud. You know, those same companies the Bush administration wants to bail out with all our money. Because that's fair. Ali Velshi joins us for discussion on this, as does John Fund, who is annoyingly becoming a staple lately (no locker for him, that's all I have to say). The talk starts off with the question of whether or not there was any criminality and wrong doing. And I have to ask, was there ever a time when we thought there wasn't wrong doing? I kinda thought that was a given. C'mon people. Financial tsunamis don't just happen.

John heard that Frannie and Freddie were cooking the books, which he thinks they got away with because they gave campaign contribution to the majority of Congress. "Unbelievable," says Anderson Cooper. No, actually, sadly all too believable. Though time will tell if that's how it really went down. John seems to think people will go to prison over this. I'm not holding my breath. John also takes us back to 2005 because he totally saw this mess coming, doncha know. He tell us that HUD had introduced a zero-down payment mortgage and that's when every started. I too, remember 2005 and John is correct about the mortgages, but he left something out.

See, back then public perception about the Bush administration's awesomeness was starting to change to the point that people were thinking, meh, not so awesome. To combat this, they pimped out every good thing they had going for them--one of these good things being high home ownership. They were all, "Look at how many people own homes under us!" And liberals were like, "well, yeah, but those people can't afford those mortgages and this is all going to bite us down the road." And then the Bush administration was all, "shut up, commies! Why do you hate America?" And so it goes.

Next up, we have a Tom Foreman piece on the bailout. Basically, Henry Paulson wants a deal now, now, now! Oh, you want details of the deal? He'll get back to you on that. Congress, as you might expect, is not pleased with this. But don't worry though, people. If history is any indicator, they'll roll right over in no time. Yay? Also? Um, this whole crisis thing, turns out, isn't so much of a must-act-this-second crisis. Hm. Now, some might think this bailout has the markings of the Bush administration doing one more massive power grab and transfer of wealth for their friends on Wall Street before the eight year party ends. But that's just crazy talk, right? I mean, lying and manipulating to get what they want? That would never happen.

Ali returns again and he's here to, well, quite frankly, bum us the hell out. But he uses snazzy wall graphics, so, you know, there's that. Anyhoo, what we're seeing on screen is all the debt that Obama and McCain's campaign promises are going to add to our existing debt. And what about the bailout, huh? Yeah, more debt. In fact, the bailout money is probably going to mean that some of the candidate's plans are going to go by the wayside. Don't worry though, I'm sure it won't be anything important. Just insignificant stuff like health care and infrastructure repair. But really, who needs things like safe bridges? Just drive slow, people, you'll be fine.

Moving on now to discussion with David Gergen, Candy Crowley, and David Brancaccio. David Brancaccio?! My PBS anchor boyfriend and CNN anchor boyfriend collide! I'm all a-twitter. Seriously though, any PBS addition to CNN is fine by me. I'm also reminded that I need to watch NOW more (great show, by the way). Anyway, there's some good discussion here, with perhaps the best point brought up by Anderson: "...for years, they have talked about health care. For years, they have talked about crumbling infrastructure. For years, they have talked about a crisis in education. But there's no money for it. But, all of a sudden, there's $700 billion for something that, oh, we can't do without." Exactly. No money for the little guy, but plenty for Wall Street. At the end of the segment Anderson tells David B. that he's a big fan, and then adds he's a big fan of The Gerg's too. And that's where the fanning stops. Sorry Candy, thanks for playing.

Transitioning now to an Ed Henry piece on Sarah Palin's excellent photo-op adventure at the UN. This is so ridiculous. Did you guys see Campbell Brown talking about Palin's sequesteredness? For a second there I thought I was watching a "Special Comment" from Olbermann. But I concur. Stop being sexist! Free Sarah Palin! Anyway, at the UN the McCain camp wouldn't even let reporters in the room with her at first. Then when the press pushed back, they gave them like less than a minute. This is so completely unacceptable. Good on the press for pushing back. I hope they keep it up.

After Ed's piece, he joins us live, so that Anderson can be totally boggled about Palin's whole not talking to the press thing. It's a little amusing how he's so clearly annoyed. Ed makes the inane statement that the public doesn't care that she's not talking. Hello, I care. And I'm not alone. Anderson thinks it makes Palin look bad, like she can't handle world leaders. Exactly. He also notes how they've even rigged the VP debate to make it easier on her. "It appears they are trying to protect her from something which I don't quite understand, because she appears very capable," says Anderson. Well, yeah, appearances can be deceiving. (And when has she appeared capable?)

Next up, we have an Abbie Boudreau piece on a continuation of the Bridge to Nowhere story. It appears there's also a Road to Nowhere that's actually already built. My regular readers already know this because I chided Anderson over two weeks ago for not noting the road with his fact "clarification." But I didn't have video and stuff, so, uh, we'll call it a draw. Anyway, the road was supposed to go to the bridge, but then there was no bridge. Palin's mouthpiece claims that she still had to build it because the contracts were already signed. I say that's crap. It's a pretty road though. Even has its own toll collector, which amuses Anderson. "Does she actually collect any tolls?" he asks. Abbie tells us that she collected their tolls. Heh, suckers!

The last piece of the night is from Drew Griffin on Biden's earmark record and that pesky Bridge to Nowhere. It seems the VP candidate is using the pork project in a lot of his stump speeches, but the funny thing is, he actually voted for the bridge. Twice. Being the good news watcher that I am, I went searching for the story behind the story. Apparently, when Tom Coburn offered that amendment to strip the money away from the bridge, he was breaking an unwritten senate rule that you don't mess with other state's projects.

Now, you can argue how much BS that is all you want (and it is kinda BS), but I think it's worth noting, which, Drew did not. This piece also hammers on Biden for his earmarks, which are always good to point out, but a part of me thinks the point is being missed here. The Bridge to Nowhere is so currently ripe for attack because Palin is touting a blatant lie. Repeatedly. Is Biden lying about his earmarks? Also? Lamest line in a piece ever: "Senator Biden must really like bridges..." You know, I'm sure there really is stuff to bring up about Biden, but this whole piece smacks of fake balance and general lameness. And Drew delivering it like he's local reporter Skip Skiperson of the generic "You Paid For It" team is not helping matters. Just saying.

"The Shot" tonight is more fun with David Blaine. Because Anderson hates him so. Our anchor ticks off some of Blaine's stunts, adding, "having all the blood drained from his body and replaced with the blood of a small animal." Actually, doing that would give Blaine some cred with Anderson. But dude, Anderson, did you just suggest emptying all of the blood out of a small animal? Somebody's getting emails. Maybe the crazies didn't notice. He said it kinda fast. But back to David Blaine, who apparently, is a liar! He's supposed to be hanging upside down in a death defying stunt for 60 hours...and he's taking breaks. There are no breaks when you are defying death! And I suppose old timey magicians actually didn't cut people in half. I'm so corrupted now.

I caught the webcast during three commercial breaks tonight. There might have been more. Sometimes it doesn't work for me. Anyhoo, we got to hear from The Gerg being his normally awesome self and then things got a little weird. Ed Henry stepped up to the mic to tell us amazing things like Dick Cheney likes Diet Sprite (dammit, don't humanize him!) and Ed used to buy soda for 70 cents, but it made him all jittery, so now he drinks water, but not warm water, which is what Erica Hill likes. So, yeah, a lot of nothingness, though slightly amusing. It's like Seinfeld in webcast form, though not as funny. I mean, I'm generous, but not that generous. The last bit I saw was with Anderson and, hey, Erica actually had a chair (provided by the awesome Kevin). Plus there is promise of a mic for Anderson. So aw, does this mean I can't call it the ghetto webcast? Also? Erica sings. Seriously. That'll do it.


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